The internet can be a platform of distractions. There’s so much information, so many advertisements, so many videos, it tends to be a little overwhelming at times.
And that’s just from the user standpoint, but what about the other side of things? When you’re a business trying to connect with your target audience through video content, how do you stand out from all this chaos and madness?
While there are several ways to set your video apart from your competitor’s, the one were talking about today is sound, or more accurately, the lack of sound.
Sometimes, purely visual storytelling draws people away from all the other noise and closer into your content.
In our experience in NY / NJ video production, we’ve seen, firsthand, some of the ways you can use silence to your advantage and how effective the silent or no-dialogue approach can be with modern audiences.
Sometimes you don’t need to go silent, just to be quiet.
While complete silence has its advantages, you can also keep the video content somewhat quiet without actually going completely audio-free and still set yourself apart enough to stand out.
For instance, you can use sound effects or a bed of music underneath the video to enhance the mood or message while still using the lack of any spoken words to draw viewers in.
For information on choosing music for your video projects, check out our recent post: Tips for Choosing the Right Music for Your Next Video Production, but when going this route, keep in mind that your video should still be effective even if the music was removed.
So quiet works, but remember, complete silence entices viewers to give the content on screen their undivided attention and can be very successful at drawing people in initially since not many companies take that approach.
You need a visual attraction…fast.
Like any video, a video without sound or, at least, without dialogue, needs to grab attention fast, and that problem gets compounded by the fact that there will be no sound to serve as a guide to the viewer.
If viewers have to decipher what to expect, they won’t wait very long for you to clear up the confusion, so you need to make an impression even faster when you’re not relying on sound for guidance.
Then there’s muted autoplay, usually with the option of tapping to enable sound, to consider. It’s become a critical part of commercial video production and social media, and silent videos should be an ideal fit for this new feature.
However, autoplay usually abides by the 3-second rule, meaning the viewer must actually stop scrolling and watch the video for at least 3 seconds for it to be counted as a view. Translation: You don’t have very long to grab the viewer’s attention and you need to do be able to do it without sound.
At the same time, you can’t give it all away at first either, or else, why should viewers stick around until the video’s conclusion?
So, you need to hold something back, yet still give enough away early on, visually, to draw interest and allow viewers to understand what they’re in for. The point is, you can’t keep them in the dark for long and you don’t have the luxury of sound to speed things along.
You need to tell your story with actions, not words.
We know. We’ve been in NY / NJ video production for long enough to know that this is easier sad than done, but when you manage to do it successfully, viewers will be completely immersed as a result.
The thing is, you need to create some type of emotional connection in a show-don’t-tell manner, and there is no room for extraneous material, only what helps to visually move the story along.
You can use bold on-screen text to help you to emphasize or explain certain elements when you’re not using dialogue as exposition, and as far as humor or suspense, you need to think of clever ways to evoke those emotions visually.
The point is, just because there won’t be sound or dialogue, that’s no excuse to fail to create a coherent story. You just need to use other techniques to get it done.
Production quality is critical.
The one thing about going the silent or, at least, the quiet route, is that you absolutely must achieve a high-quality visual, no matter what it takes to do it.
As longtime NJ / NY video production vets, trust us, all the focus will be on the visual elements of the video production, so they have to look good, and that includes the set itself.
All visual elements have added importance when there will be no sound to distract or draw attention away from them. That means you won’t be able to get away with amateur equipment or software.
The bottom line is, if your video only contains visual elements, you won’t find much forgiveness if those elements appear sub-par or amateurish.
Do some research.
Like mentioned at the top, these days, people are used to visual and audial chaos. It seems that as soon as we step outside our door in the morning we’re being assaulted by images and sounds.
That’s why it can be difficult to remove yourself from that and come up with ways to reach out and connect with people through your videos without using dialogue or sound.
So, for some ideas or inspiration, check out some classic silent films. After all, before audio was an option, film directors were solely concerned with telling their stories visually, so there’s still much to learn from them.
The truth is, silence really can be golden; you just need to know how to use it because, sometimes, in order to rise above all the noise, you just don’t make a sound.
About KVibe Productions: KVibe, a leader in NY / NJ video production for years, offers the total package of video production services. Whether you need a promo video, a commercial or corporate video production, a feature film, etc., KVibe will take you every step of the way, from development through distribution. At KVibe, we create to inspire.